Survey of Non-Bank Financial Institutions

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1 Survey of Non-Bank Financial Institutions April 4, 2000 Final Report

2 Ed Bachelder and Sam Ditzion Sam Ditzion, Daniel Losk, and Mike Heller Kate Garnica, Sharon Petitpas, and Manisha Pai Dove Consulting i Finrpt.doc

3 Executive Summary...5 Background...11 Study Objectives...16 Research Methodology...20 Survey Administration...23 Key Observations...25 Markets Summaries...48 Case Studies...62 Appendices...70 Dove Consulting 1 Executive Summary

4 Overall Product Availability among NBFI Respondents...8 Check Cashing and Money Order Average Fee and Volume Data...9 Product Revenue as an Percentage of Total Revenue...10 Estimated Pre-tax Income per Outlet by Market Area and Type of NBFI...10 Where Lower-Income Households without Deposit Accounts Cash Their Checks...13 Number of Check Cashing Outlets in the US...14 Geographic Distribution of Check Cashing Outlets: United States...16 Geographic Distribution of Check Cashing Outlets: Northeast...17 Geographic Distribution of Check Cashing Outlets: Southeast...17 Geographic Distribution of Check Cashing Outlets: Upper Midwest...18 Geographic Distribution of Check Cashing Outlets: West...18 Number of NBFIs Surveyed vs. Total by Market...23 Overall Product Availability Among NBFI Respondents...25 Direct Deposit Service Products by Market...27 Days of Operation by Market Area and Type of NBFI...29 Hours of Operation by Market Area and Type of NBFI...29 Average Distance from All NBFIs to Closest Bank, ATM, and Post Office...31 Fees to Cash a Payroll Check by Market and Type of NBFI...34 Fees to Cash a Government Check by Market and Type of NBFI...34 Fees to Cash a Personal Check by Market and Type of NBFI...35 Check Cashing Volume and Fees by Market and Type of NBFI...36 Check Cashing Volume and Fees by Market and Type of NBFI...37 Product Revenue as an Percentage of Total Revenue...42 Store Size by Market Area and Type of NBFI...43 Dove Consulting 2 Executive Summary

5 Estimated Pre-tax Income per Outlet by Type of NBFI and Market Area...47 Atlanta Market Map...48 Atlanta Check Cashing Fee Schedule...50 Boston Market Map...52 Boston Check Cashing Fee Schedule...54 San Antonio Market Map...56 San Antonio Check Cashing Fee Schedule...57 San Diego Market Map...59 San Diego Check Cashing Fee Schedule...60 Comparison Between Ace Cash Express and Dollar Financial Group...63 Financial Analysis of an Independent San Antonio NBFI...69 Dove Consulting 3 Executive Summary

6 Survey Participation Rate...6 Reasons Why Unbanked Families Do Not Have Checking Accounts...11 Leading NBFI Chains SIC Code : Check Cashing Services...15 Market Comparison...19 Participation Rate by Market...21 Data Element Collection by Method...22 NBFI Participation Rate by Market...24 Product Availability by Market...26 Languages Spoken at NBFIs by Market...30 Correlations...32 Average Fee by Product...33 Product Availability and Average Monthly Volumes by Product Line...38 Product Availability and Average Monthly Volumes by Product Line...38 Average Revenue by Market Area and NBFI Type...40 Staffing Levels by Market Area and Type of NBFI...43 Composite Cost Structure as a Percentage of Total Revenue by Market Area and Type of NBFI...45 Estimated Pre-tax Income per Outlet by Market Area and Type of NBFI...46 Atlanta 1990 Census Demographic Data...49 Boston 1990 Census Demographic Data...54 San Antonio 1990 Census Demographic Data...57 San Diego 1990 Census Demographic Data...60 Dove Consulting 4 Executive Summary

7 Dove Consulting was contracted by the Department of the Treasury to survey non-bank financial institutions (NBFIs) in four US markets. The NBFIs surveyed were selected because their primary business activity is check cashing and/or money transmission, which is only one segment of the full range of money service businesses. The purpose of this research was to gather new information on this growing financial services industry segment for Treasury in the context of its broader EFT '99 research. Although the NBFI industry has grown rapidly over the last few years, there has been little empirical research on the nature of the industry its size, competitive structure, pricing and profitability. As these entities become more prominent players in the financial services industry generally, it will be of interest to researchers and policymakers to understand how NBFIs compare with traditional financial institutions. By commissioning this study, Treasury hoped to gain new data on NBFIs' business structures where they locate, what products and services they offer, and the fees they charge. Additionally, Treasury was interested in gauging the availability and demand for EFT products offered through NBFIs. Together, Treasury and Dove selected four markets in which to survey NBFIs during December 1999 and January 2000: the cities of Atlanta, Georgia; Boston, Massachusetts; San Antonio, Texas; and San Diego, California. These markets were selected to be surveyed because they represent four different US regions, encompass different racial/ethnic segments of the US population, and are located in states with different NBFI regulatory environments. Based on the Treasury requirement that at least 30 NBFIs be surveyed in each market, Dove obtained responses from 130 NBFIs across the four markets: Atlanta (36); Boston (31); San Antonio (31); and San Diego (32). The NBFI participation rates for this survey are summarized for each market and business type in the Table 1.1 below: Dove Consulting 5 Executive Summary

8 Atlanta Boston San Antonio San Diego Overall # % # % # % # % # % Total NBFIs* (InfoUSA) NBFIs surveyed Participating NBFIs 36 37% 31 91% 31 46% 32 44% % Total Chain NBFIs (InfoUSA) Participating Chain NBFIs 18 60% % 26 46% 7 23% 71 53% Total Indep. NBFIs (InfoUSA) Participating Indep. NBFIs 18 23% 11 79% 5 8% 25 33% 59 25% Participating Chain NBFIs 18 50% 20 65% 26 84% 7 22% 71 55% Participating Indep. NBFIs 18 50% 11 35% 5 16% 25 78% 59 45% * InfoUSA's database is primarily gathered through yellow and white page listings. InfoUSA representatives verify that the database is updated on a monthly basis. Table 1.1 The 130 responses Dove received represented a 48% response rate to the strictly voluntary survey. Significantly, 112 of the 130 respondents (86%) answered survey questions requesting information on their revenues and 84 of the 130 respondents (65%) provided cost information, which enables this study to offer information on these firms' financial performance 1. Dove surveyed NBFIs in these four markets to obtain information on their products and services, their revenues and costs, and their facilities. Additionally, Dove performed mapping of NBFI locations and other financial service providers in these four markets to examine locational and demographic factors that may be relevant to the growth and success of NBFIs. Due to the small sample size, the results of this research are not intended to be statistically representative of the NBFI industry as a whole, nor should the results be used as the basis for national estimates. Dove Consulting 6 Executive Summary

9 Based on this survey of NBFIs, there are eight key observations: Non-Bank Financial Institutions offer a wide range of financial services and perform transactions that are needed by the underbanked population. Across all four market areas studied, the three most commonly offered products by survey participants include: Check Cashing (95%), Money Orders (97%) and Money Transmission (87%) services. Other financial services that were not as widely available include Bill Payment (48%), Direct Deposit Services (27%) and ATMs (19%). 2 Some NBFIs offer a one-stop shopping format in their stores, while others limit the financial services offerings to money transmission and money orders. The availability of the products and services studied across all NBFIs participating in the survey is depicted in Figure 1.1. Direct Deposit service products, which allow customers to access their electronically deposited payments at a NBFI, are offered at 27% of the responding NBFIs through a variety of banks. Surveyed NBFIs offer two types of direct deposit services:! One type of product sends federal payments electronically to an ATM cardaccessible account.! The other type of product allows the NBFI to charge the customer a fee for printing his/her federal check, and then charge the customer its standard fee to cash the check. NBFI respondents reported that these newly available Direct Deposit products were not popular in the marketplace because the price to the consumer is higher than cashing a paper check, and the revenue to the NBFI is lower than cashing a paper check. Dove Consulting 7 Executive Summary

10 Money Order Check Cashing* 97% 95% Money Transmission 90% Bill Payment** Lottery Tickets 48% 48% Direct Deposit 27% ATM Machine Municipal Services Payday Loans State Benefit Distribution 19% 17% 12% 12% Foreign Currency Exchange Paw n Broker Services 5% 7% 0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100% P e rce n ta ge o f Re s p o n de n ts th a t O ffe r P ro d u ct * Check cashing services were offered at 94.6% of the NBFIs included in our study. The remaining NBFIs only offered money transmission and not check cashing services. ** Bill payment includes respondents that offer electronic bill payment and/or accepts utility payments. *** Although they were specifically surveyed as to the availability of rent-to-own services and courier services, none of the responding NBFIs offered such services. Figure 1.1 The participating NBFI outlets are convenient for their customers, because they are open more days and for longer hours than most banks. Of the surveyed outlets, 96% were open on Saturdays and 26% on Sundays. On average, NBFIs are open for 66, 68, 63 and 77 hours per week in Atlanta, Boston, San Antonio and San Diego respectively. NBFI respondents offer convenient locations and provide services using the language preferences of their customers. Important elements in NBFIs success include three service dimensions that are not necessarily provided by traditional banks:! Collectively across all four markets, NBFI staff speak at least nine different languages, perhaps to meet the need of the non-english speaking population.! NBFIs tend to be conveniently located along major public transportation system routes and/or major intersections. Among respondents, 61% of NBFI outlets are within half a block of public transportation route.! The average NBFI was located closer to a bank branch and an ATM than to another NBFI. Across the four markets studied, the average distances between all NBFIs and the nearest NBFI, bank, ATM, and post office is 0.63, 0.52, 0.39 and 1.06 miles respectively. This suggests that NBFIs may serve a different customer segment than banks. Dove Consulting 8 Executive Summary

11 Survey responses demonstrated a substantial difference in product prices between chain and independent operators, and across different market areas. Check cashing and money orders were the two highest volume services offered. The following chart shows that chain NBFIs achieved both higher volumes and higher check cashing fees than independent outlets. Chain NBFIs also sold more money orders, but at lower prices than independent outlets did. Prices and volumes were highest in the Boston market, since there are fewer NBFIs per capita and those outlets are mostly chain operations. Check Cashing Volume 4,000 3,500 3,000 2,500 2,000 1,500 1, Check Cashing Volum e by Store Type/M arket Chain Independent Atlanta NBFI Boston NBFI San Antonio NBFI San Diego NBFI Average Check Cashing Fee $8 $7 $6 $5 $4 $3 $2 $1 $0 Average Check Cashing Fee by Store Type/M arket Chain Independent Atlanta NBFI Boston NBFI San Anto nio NBFI San Diego NBFI Store Type Market Store Type Market Money Order Volume 6,000 5,000 4,000 3,000 2,000 1,000 0 M oney Order Volum e by Store Type/M arket Chain Independent Atlanta NBFI Boston NBFI San Antonio NBFI San Diego NBFI Store Type Market Average Money Order Fee $0.90 $0.80 $0.70 $0.60 $0.50 $0.40 $0.30 $0.20 $0.10 $0.00 Average M oney Order Fees by Store Type/M arket Chain Independent Store Type Atlanta NBFI Boston NBFI San Anto nio NBFI Market San Diego NBFI Figure 1.2 Government checks represent less than 16% of the checks cashed by the surveyed NBFIs; the overwhelming majority is composed of payroll checks (80%). The majority of NBFI outlets do not cash personal checks, and when they do, they generally charge a rate that is more than twice the fee for payroll and government checks. The annual revenues per NBFI outlet varied dramatically among the four markets studied. The survey results ranged from an average of $324,500 in Boston to $84,300 in San Diego. On a product mix basis, 66% of all responding NBFIs revenue was derived from check cashing fees. Money Transmission and Money orders contributed 18% and 10% of total revenues respectively. Although loans accounted for only 3% of surveyed NBFIs revenue across all four markets, in San Diego, where NBFIs are permitted to originate payday loans 3, fees charged for payday loans accounted for 16% of the average store s revenue. Dove Consulting 9 Executive Summary

12 18% 66% 10% 2% 3% 2% Less than 1% Check Cashing Money Transmission Money Orders Bill Payment Loans Other Direct Deposit Svcs Figure 1.3 Operating costs for survey participants averaged 66% of sales. The largest cost for NBFIs are salaries and payroll expenses that, on average, accounted for 27% of revenue. Rent was the second largest expense accounting for about 11%, followed by 9% for cash and money services and 7% for bad debt. Collectively, third-party expenses, corporate overhead and management fees, advertising and marketing accounted for another 7% of total revenue. All other pretax expenses accounted for 6% of revenue. Based on the revenue and cost information gathered in the survey, the overall average pretax return on sales was 34%. Pre-tax returns on sales and average revenues reported in each of the markets indicated that annual pre-tax income ranged from $32,500 in San Diego to $95,000 in Boston. The survey responses also indicated that annual pre-tax income averaged $39,000 at independent NBFIs and $65,000 at chain NBFIs. $100 $90 $80 $70 $60 $50 $40 $30 $20 $10 $0 $65 $39 $55 $95 $48 $32 Chain Indepe nde nt Atlanta Boston San Antonio San Diego Store Type Market Figure 1.4 Dove Consulting 10 Executive Summary

13 A January 2000 Federal Reserve study estimated that 9.5% of families in the U.S. did not have any type of transaction account (checking, savings, and money market deposit accounts, money market mutual funds, and call accounts at brokerages) in This figure has declined significantly since 1995, at which time 13% of families in the U.S. did not have any type of transaction account 5. The study offers the following reasons cited by respondents for their family for not having a checking account 6 : Reason Do not write enough checks to make it worthwhile 34.4% 30.4% 25.3% 28.4% Minimum balance is too high 7.7% 8.7% 8.8% 8.6% Do not like dealing with banks 15.0% 15.3% 18.6% 18.5% Service charges are too high 8.6% 11.3% 8.4% 11.0% Cannot manage or balance a checking account 5.0% 6.5% 8.0% 7.2% No bank has convenient hours or location 1.2% 0.8% 1.2% 1.2% Do not have enough money 21.2% 21.2% 20.0% 12.9% Credit problems * 0.7% 1.4% 2.7% Do not need/want an account * 3.2% 4.9% 6.3% Other 6.8% 1.9% 3.5% 3.1% Total 100% 100% 100% 100% * Responses not coded separately in Table 2.1 A 1998 Dove analysis of survey data gathered for the Financial Management Service (FMS) by Shogull/Booz Allen indicated that 24% of Federal benefit check recipients do not have bank accounts 7. Some industry experts estimate that 30 to 40 million US households are either unbanked and/or have sub-prime credit risks, and that 40% of US households are without unsecured credit cards 8. A portion of the unbanked population uses banks for their financial service needs, but many have turned to alternatives. NBFIs, such as check-cashing outlets (CCOs), have emerged as niche industries for the unbanked population. A 1997 study of families without deposit accounts and incomes below $25,000 found that 46% of respondents had used a check-cashing outlet in the past year. The study also identified that 71% of Dove Consulting 11 Background

14 unbanked respondents had a checking or savings account at some point in the past. Figure 2.1 shows where these unbanked respondents cashed their checks most often 9 : Dove Consulting 12 Background

15 Banks 48.5% 23.2% Grocery Stores Check Cashers Convenience or Liquor Store Did not cash any checks 17.2% At Em ployer 1.5% 1.5% 3.5% 4.5% Som ew here Else Source: Filene Research Institute, 1997 Figure 2.1 NBFIs offer a range of services including check cashing, money orders, money transfers, bill payments, payday advance loans, as well as a variety of other services that are offered at traditional financial institutions. NBFIs often offer one-stop shopping for their customers' non-financial services related needs as well by providing photocopying, faxing, lottery tickets, postage stamps, and pre-paid phone cards. Most check cashers represent full-service NBFIs, typically offering their customers the full range of services listed above. The check cashing industry is growing rapidly, cashing over 180 million checks annually with a face value of $60 billion, and collecting almost $1.5 billion in fees 10. InfoUSA, the largest business database company, reports that there are currently over 9,500 stores in the United States that classify their primary line of business as check cashing 11. This number has grown from just over 7,100 in June An additional 1,300 stores listed check cashing as a secondary line of business 13. Approximately 831 stores in Illinois classify their primary line of business as currency exchange, which is local terminology for check cashing outlets 14. In addition to businesses that list check cashing as a primary or secondary line of business, as Figure 2.1 shows, thousands of financial institutions, grocery stores and liquor stores offer check cashing services, sometimes without charging fees. This estimate does not include approximately 200 ATM check cashing machines made by InnoVentry Corporation, 7- Eleven Inc., Greenland Corporation, and Ace Cash Express that cash checks. The chart below estimates the growth of such firms over the last seven years 15 : Dove Consulting 13 Background

16 Source: InfoUSA estimates, 2000 Figure 2.2 (to date) According to InfoUSA, close to 10,000 businesses classify their primary line of business as money transfer services 16. Over 40,000 additional stores offer money transmission services as an ancillary service, and therefore are not included in this study. Nearly all money transmission outlets are either Western Union or MoneyGram agents, who manage approximately 31,000 and 20,000 agents respectively 17. Western Union was acquired by First Data Corporation in MoneyGram, which was owned by First Data until 1996, is now owned by Viad Corporation. Many stores that offer money transmission services overlap with check-cashing outlets, but it is difficult to track duplicates because the same stores often operate under multiple names with different phone numbers. This research focused on businesses whose primary SIC code is check cashing services, currency exchange, or money transfer services, as they best represent the NBFI industry for the purposes of this study 18. Dove eliminated overlapping outlets for the selected markets. Dove analysis found that two major chains, Ace Cash Express (ACE) and Dollar Financial Group (DFG), operate approximately 12% of the total number of check cashing outlets in US. Although public information is limited, Dove identified five companies in addition to ACE and DFG that operate more than 100 CCOs each. Together, the following chains operate approximately 20% of the total number of CCOs in the US. The remaining 80% of the outlets are mostly one to ten-store independently owned operations. Dove Consulting 14 Background

17 Company Ace Cash Express, Inc. Dollar Financial Group, Inc. Operates Under # of Outlets # of States Founded Headquarters Ace Cash Express Irving, TX Money Mart Berwyn, PA MS Management USA Checks Cashed North Brook, IL Cash America International Inc. Eager/Hershman Partnership Multi-States Financial Corporation Pay-O-Matic Corporation Mr. Payroll Forth Worth, TX Variety of names 144 IL, FL, CA 1942 Des Plaines, IL Variety of names Chicago, IL Variety of names 101 NY, NJ 1950 Syosset, NY Total of Seven Largest Chains 1,875 (20%) Total of Remaining NBFIs 7,625 (80%) Total NBFIs (SIC ) 9,500 Table 2.2 Dove Consulting 15 Background

18 The Treasury Department commissioned this study to gather empirical data and qualitative observations about NBFIs in four urban US markets. Treasury s objective in commissioning the study was to gather new information about the rapidly growing nonbank financial services industry, including data on the number and types of establishments, geographical distribution, products and services offered, transaction volumes, pricing and store profitability. Additionally, Treasury wished to gauge the availability and demand for third-party direct deposit products in the context of the EFT 99 project. These products allow customers to receive payments, including federal benefits, at an NBFI facility that are electronically deposited at a bank. Based on the task order, Dove and Treasury were to select four urban markets in which to survey check cashers and money transmitters. Dove conducted a zip code-level GIS examination of these outlets across the US, and reviewed existing state regulations governing these industries. Based on these analyses, Dove and Treasury selected four cities that represented a range of geographies, NBFI market penetration, and applicable state regulation. Maps of check cashing outlets (CCOs) in four US regions are displayed below. CCOs in Zip Code 8 and more 6 to 8 4 to 6 2 to 4 1 to 2 Figure 3.1 Confirming the literature on this industry, NBFIs tend to be located in metro areas where a large portion of the US lower-income population resides. Dove Consulting 16 Study Objectives

19 The following maps represent the number of the check cashing outlets (CCOs) in the United States by zip code. They do not include the approximately 831 stores in Illinois, which are mostly in Chicago, that classify their primary line of business as currency exchange. CCOs in Zip Code 8 and more 6 to 8 4 to 6 2 to 4 1 to 2 Figure 3.2 CCOs in Zip Code 8 and more 6 to 8 4 to 6 2 to 4 1 to 2 Figure 3.3 Dove Consulting 17 Study Objectives

20 CCOs in Zip Code 8 and more 6 to 8 4 to 6 2 to 4 1 to 2 Figure 3.4 CCOs in Zip Code 8 and more 6 to 8 4 to 6 2 to 4 1 to 2 Figure 3.5 Dove Consulting 18 Study Objectives

21 The following matrix represents the four NBFI markets that Dove and Treasury agreed to study. Each of the markets captures a unique attribute that would be instructive to explore further. Refer to the market summaries section for more detailed information on regulations. Atlanta Boston San Antonio San Diego Nationwide 1990 Census Data Median Family Income $25,173 $34,377 $26,885 $39,318 $35,225 Household Income < $25,000 54% 42% 53% 36% 42% Household Income < $50,000 80% 60% 84% 70% 76% Population 394, , ,933 1,110, MM Percentage Minority 69% 37% 28% 33% 20% Hispanic Origin (of any race) 2% 11% 56% 21% 9% Number of Households 155, , , , MM 1999 Data Number of NBFI Outlets ,500 Number of FI Branches/Offices ,000 NBFI outlets per 1000 (1990) Households FIs Branches/Offices per 1000 (1990) Households Check Cashing Regulations Yes Yes No Yes 28 States Payday Loan Prohibited Yes Yes Yes No 19 States Notes: Percentage minority is defined as (total population - white population)/total population. Hispanic origin (of any race) data from the 1990 Census is also included in the above table. Number of NBFIs include all businesses that whose primary SIC code is check cashing services or money transfer services. For the nationwide category, these numbers are 9,500 and 10,000 respectively. The above San Diego data does not include NBFIs, FIs, or Census data for San Ysidro, the small town in between San Diego and the Mexican border. Table 3.1 The markets were selected based on a review of secondary research and databases, analyses of the national distribution of Check Cashing outlets and discussions with Treasury. Dove Consulting 19 Study Objectives

22 The study was conducted with the purpose of gathering anecdotal data to provide case studies and to provide descriptive data on the NBFI industry in each of the four geographic areas. Key research objectives were to gather the following information on NBFIs in each of the four markets to be studied:! Size! Products and Services! Competitive Structure! Pricing! Profitability The population surveyed included businesses within the four selected cities that listed either check cashing or money transmission as their primary industry classification in the InfoUSA database. This definition limited the survey population to those businesses that derive the bulk of their revenues from one of these two activities. Exceptions were grocery stores and pharmacies that had a separate NBFI operating on premises. Also excluded from the survey population were non-depository institutions that provide financial services other than check cashing and money transmission, such as retail foreign currency exchange outlets and travelers check issuers 19. Dove identified the number of check cashing outlets and money transmitters in each market area through compiled databases and cross-verified the InfoUSA database with local telephone directories. In Atlanta, San Antonio, and San Diego, a probability sample was used. Names of NBFIs were drawn through random selection from telephone directories and other appropriate listings for the geographies. In Boston a smaller NBFI market each NBFI in the area was contacted. Overall, 74% of the NBFIs in the market areas studied were contacted and asked to participate in the survey. Dove Consulting 20 Research Methodology

23 Market Number of NBFIs In Market Number of NBFIs Contacted Percent Contacted Atlanta % Boston % San Antonio % San Diego % Total % Table 4.1 The sample was drawn from the telephone directories using a random selection procedure in the larger markets, specifically Atlanta, San Antonio and San Diego. NBFIs in each area were identified and contacted during December 1999 and January As anticipated, many of the respondents were difficult to interview by phone, and personal visits were required to obtain the needed participation. Dove completed the surveys in each market using three survey stages. Using a quota of 30 NBFIs in each market, Dove contacted NBFIs in each market to gather data on product lines, hours of operation, business practices, and volumes. These telephone-screening calls were used to verify that the NBFI organization provides the services of interest:! Check cashing (payroll, federal government, other government, other)! Direct deposit services (by source)! Third party electronic accounts After these services were confirmed, we mailed the survey form included in Appendix 1. Before sending out the surveys, Dove called participants to introduce the survey, ask preliminary questions, and determine whether they have the capability to complete the survey in English. Dove faxed and/or mailed a letter to a number of NBFIs requesting their participation in the research and a copy of the detailed survey forms. Dove did not send follow-up notes, but called those recipients who did not respond and asked them to complete the survey and either mail or fax it back. Dove provided a postage-paid return envelope and toll-free numbers for participants who chose to complete the survey by telephone. Dove Consulting 21 Research Methodology

24 After the first wave of telephone research and mail/fax survey stages were completed, Dove conducted field observations and interviews to gather information that we could not have obtained otherwise. Dove field researchers used the data forms to capture data through both personal interviews with staff and materials provided to customers at the facility. This permitted Dove to corroborate information gathered through prior stages and to fill many holes that were left due to non-response. Additionally, the field visits enabled Dove to gather site location and facility data on operations, staffing, signage, layout and distance to other sites (e.g., traffic corridors, public transportation, proximity to financial institutions and ATMs, etc.). The field visit yielded diagrams, photographs, and latitude and longitude readings taken using a Hertz NeverLost GPS receiver. The following table summarizes the data elements that were gathered at each stage of the research collection process. The researchers learned that the response rate and their ability to gather information increased when they followed up the mailing with a personal visit to the store. Each market required three days of fieldwork to reach the quota. It is unlikely that the required number of surveys would have been gathered without the fieldwork. Publicly Available Data Stage 1 Phone Survey Stage 2 Fax/Mail Survey Stage 3 Field Research For each location Inventory of financial services offered X X X Price schedules X X X Product lines (see below) X X Revenues X X X Costs and expenses X X X Policies X X X Hours of operation X X X X Staffing X X X Facility characteristics X X X Ownership data, affiliation X X X Table 4.2 The product lines were inventoried to identify the other activities and services that were conducted out of the same facility. The services tracked included:! Check cashing service (personal, payroll, federal government and other government)! Municipal services (e.g., licenses, public transportation fares)! Money Transmission! Money orders! Bill payment! Consumer loans! Direct deposit services! State benefit distribution! Deferred deposit (payday loans)! Foreign currency exchange! Lottery tickets! ATM Machine! Rent-to-own products! Pawn broker services Dove Consulting 22 Research Methodology

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